Archive for category ‘playing with (roaster) fire’

coffee, spread out

Monday, May 26th, 2008

the jebena boil: "at the still point, there the dance is." ... pic by jake it shook all the wobbly, week-long sickies right out of us. just clunked 'em right out, and ended too the related seven-day spro fast with a sock to the jowls ... here we were, sitting in a ...

“entertaining” at the bloghouse

Saturday, April 19th, 2008

it's a facile, fool-proof way to tell you're having a really swell time with fabulous barista persons: you've forgotten the pizza crust. this blog gravely apologizes to the traveling atlanta threesome, all of whom were forced to return home with carcinogens in the barista hair.

CI‘s favored roast: fifth crack

Wednesday, January 30th, 2008

alas, the hazards of winter home roasting: (a) the cold. (b) the hotness. we do, however, like the arty kitsch that is the glass fracture pattern splintering upward from the roaster exhaust. very urrrrban.

gog is dead. long live magog.

Thursday, September 27th, 2007

back to the roaster's lid-juggle -- now curvaceously illustrated and actually tasted! it's pretty simple, really. we used our wbc fanboy lot of green kenya gethumbwini peaberry (scroll down) and charted two separate air roasts -- let's call them gog and magog -- back to back, in the same weather and ...

deidrichizing, now more cerebrally

Friday, September 14th, 2007

warning: wee-hour wonkiness follows. casting about the interconnected webs for some sort of roasting standard whereby one can be sure he is "properly drying" coffee without baking them thar beayns, we stubbed our shins on a handy reminder that the audible first crack in the roast process is an exothermic reaction, ...

the finger sez: deidrichize your roaster!

Wednesday, September 12th, 2007

roasting log: written proof this blog has no idea what it's doing. let's ignore the incoming new york times traffic, shall we? and insist that this is still some hack blog ... they laughed when CI vowed to "simulate the beneficial aspects of the cold" weather on hot-air coffee roasting. well ...

CI does the extraction factor juggle

Saturday, September 2nd, 2006

the sulawesi, it tasted of baked hash. maybe some newt tail. extraordinarily gritty. thus, conjuring the notion that brew temperature is how one buys espresso solubles, the conclusion was reached that we were, ah, overpaying. that is, the extraction of oils was heavily tainted by the extraction of bean infrastructure ...

me. esmeralda. lunch.

Thursday, July 6th, 2006

annnnd, we're live-blogging the lunch-hour roasting of a quarter (to the gram) of our esmeralda spoils. because, you know, this blog's coverage of the runup to the actual consumption of said delicacy has been way too low key. 1:44 p.m. - the one good thing about small-time air roasting devices: it ...

CI’s logistic-free journey to source

Wednesday, June 21st, 2006

this blog had fomented evening plans including the consumption of the latest netflix installment, deep thoughts on the subject of pending panamanian goodness and perhaps shots from the long-neglected levered device. alas, it is becoming evident that when innocent bystanders realize you're the sort of blathering nutcase who would drop a ...

WBC: afar-blogging

Sunday, May 21st, 2006

james hoffmann's el salvador finca la fany bourbon used in his competition blends. with james safely in the world barista championship finals, it falls to this blog to make wildly unwarranted performance extrapolations based on a single component of his competition blend. stunning, really, how a crashing hoffmann had the ...

CI: turning over new leaves — again!

Wednesday, April 26th, 2006

in an attempt at transparent self-effacement, this blog prints the following self-effacing snippet -- self-effacingly. "Bready. A bready taste manifests in coffees that have not been roasted long enough or at high enough temperature to bring out the flavor oils." ...

oh yeah: actual cup improvements

Tuesday, April 25th, 2006

thought about wading into this nonsense, numchucks afly. but no. perfectly adequate meaty rebuttals have been filed. it's the new blog! no more superfluous echo-punditry here, no sirree. [my only succinct (!) take is here]. and so, we dragged ourselves back to the bar, where this blog is assiduously working ...

USBC: the orgy of allusions drags on…

Sunday, April 16th, 2006

rocks, sticks, bling ... now popcorn. a kernel showed up in a puro scuro roast today, oddly enough. which sounds sort of like a caragay special, when you think about it.

blundering toward ploof reduction

Wednesday, March 22nd, 2006

warning: vast, overreaching conclusion-making follows. a sign of this blog's recent troubles: the only source of caffeine for the past 36 hours is excedrin migraine. (not, mind you, that this blog was breaking any federal laws by using medication for non-legitimate uses ... the headache, it was real -- and probably ...

updosing is like a cheap date!

Wednesday, January 25th, 2006

the resident home barista over at the third-wave echo chamber restates what some believe is the test case for aussie-style updosing. no one, however, seems eager to do the actual test of instaurator's hydraulic theory so succinctly extrapolated by george sabados in barista mag and so recently wielded by this ...

CI clumsily wields the hydraulic principle!

Monday, January 23rd, 2006

there is a dramatic difference in cup character between SM's zimbabwe aaa+ and the award-winning leopard forest zimbabwe aa+ bizarrely imported directly to tiny travelers rest, s.c. (the background) -- a taste divergence easily explained by numerous differences in the cultivar, processing and import route of the respective coffees. but ...

your mother lode of tactile adjectives, right here

Thursday, January 12th, 2006

"this is no game," he said. "you will never know what it’s like to work on a farm until your hands are raw, just so people can have fresh marijuana." which is, like, totally true duuuude. i won't know. it's also like saying one's barista skillz may never be taken seriously ...

cliffy’s notes

Sunday, January 8th, 2006

findings in a nutshell: i don't know what makes some beans workable ... but i think roast profile is a major factor. i also know that stretching a batch into 12 minutes on a hot air roaster is a bad idea. makes for general mud-brick characteristics with hints of mud, ...

actual studious follow-up

Wednesday, January 4th, 2006

the aforeshadowed research has consumed days of data-logging, acute grind-performance observation and vocab-busting soul searches for more apt terms to describe the conundrum of what makes some beans and blends more tangibly "workable" in the shot-building process ... yet is still wholly unlikely to satisfy the CG curmudgeons formerly loathe ...

overcoming, accidentally

Monday, December 5th, 2005

you didn't want this sulawesi, all muddy and dusty like the falloff from a wall of poorly mixed bricks -- the kind that used to make up the crumbling exterior of the church basement of my childhood. used to dig my fingers in the stuff and think i was Super ...

another hideous frame grab

Monday, November 14th, 2005

the more geekily roasted sulawesi is showing spicy-bourbon promise, and becomes dramatically mellow in macchiato form (it seems a different bean altogether, really). more taste notes later, and more lessons from mother sulawesi, emanating from correct ambient temperature/roast program correlation! whatever that means... meanwhile, a zesty macc featuring a freehand rendition ...

charting the diff

Thursday, November 10th, 2005

seeming proof that ambient temperature has everything to do with a desirable roast curve. notice the very rapid warm-up period when the room temperature starts at 25 C (77 degrees F), denoted by the green bars. the night before, roasting the same amount of coffee in the same electrical outlet ...

curvy: the sulawesi, thermoprobed

Tuesday, November 8th, 2005

lesson no. 1 from the now-rigorous commitment to chart my roast curves as i consume the newly arrived sulawesi toraja grade 1 -- all 20 green pounds of it: ambient temperature is huge. huger than i thought. although it's sometimes hard to see any variance on the total time it ...

sackloth and chaff

Wednesday, September 28th, 2005

NEWLY ACQUIRED KNOWLEDGE: a bad idea for living room curtains would be to riff on mark rothko's canvases for a chunks-of-color scheme evocative of ... well, it was evocative of a nursery school. could have been the use of primary colors. could have been the preponderance of yellow that garnished a ...

now moving: pictures!

Tuesday, September 6th, 2005

indeed, the all-white video links were my fault. my fault, i say. something about quicktime's new mac encoder being too advanced for your backwoods pc quicktime mutations to handle. and of course, no one wants to go hunt a missing codec just to see a man choke a piece of ...

roast profile: flat. very flat.

Saturday, August 13th, 2005

in advance of the move monday (what? i didn't tell you we're moving? to a nice 40s stick place with a jacuzzi and room for an espresso cart? and wood floors? and an ideal espresso lab area off the kitchen? huh. well, sorry.), i mustered the cojones to take a ...

nibbling weekend reprise

Monday, August 1st, 2005

the brazil cerrado doesn't impress me. bought it for the still-deferred blending i intended to do, and feel i've roasted it as well as i can. still ... it's annoyingly balanced. meaning that it doesn't offer anything notable, except maybe some very light chocolate notes. decent, but not charming. in ...

more vim with your zim

Tuesday, July 12th, 2005

the zim aa+, second batch. roasted further into second crack -- a full city plus 25 seconds, or so. much improved from sunday's full city batch. sticking more conscientiously to the taste wheel, i'd say on the aroma side there were some intruiging balsamic and barley notes. let the shot ...

size compensation

Monday, July 11th, 2005

ah-HAH. smaller bean, quicker roast. it makes so much sense now... was having a beast of a time getting the notoriously forgiving yemen to roast in any sort of acceptable form. everything ashy, everything piquant. when it occurred to me that the miniscule bean sizes could account for this. tiny beans ...

more air theory (we’ll move on to liquid at some point)

Friday, July 8th, 2005

ruminating further on the physics of hot-air roasting... if my i-roast indeed applies heat to green coffee more consistently than any other machine under $4,000, and the general method is also known as "fluid bed roasting" for presumably optimizing the way heat circulates throughout the process, that would indeed support my ...